Thu, 24 Oct 2019

A court in Russia's northwestern Leningrad region has sentenced a former officer of the Federal Security Service (FSB) to four years in prison on torture charges.

The region's military court on September 13 found Ilya Kirsanov guilty of abusing powers with the use of a weapon that caused serious bodily harm and handed down the sentence on the same day.

The court also ordered Kirsanov to pay 700,000 rubles ($10,800) to his victim, local businessman Igor Salikov, as compensation for physical and moral damages.

Investigators say that Kirsanov sexually assaulted Salikov with his weapon during a search of his house in May 2018. Salikov suffered several serious internal injuries from the assault, which occurred while he was handcuffed.

Kirsanov pleaded not guilty and insisted that the injuries to Salikov were self-inflicted.

Salikov is currently in pretrial detention on rape charges. Kirsanov searched his house due to that charge last year.

Abuse by police, prison guards, and other law enforcement officers have long been seen as a problem in Russia.

The topic has come to the attention of the Russian public and media in recent months after a video showing at least 17 guards beating an inmate at a prison in the city of Yaroslavl was published in July last year.

Fifteen guards from that prison have been arrested following a wave of public outcry following the release of the video. Probes also have been launched into the actions of several prison guards suspected in torturing or killing inmates in Russia's other regions.

Copyright (c) 2018. RFE/RL, Inc. Republished with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036

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